The Arabian Peninsula & Persian Gulf: D+0 (9 July, 1987) Part II**


*Author’s Note: This will be the final timeline embed of 2018 😊*


9 July

Note: All times posted here will be Riyadh Time (GMT+3)

0630– Upon receiving word that war has broken out in Europe, the USS Constellation’s air wing (CVW-14) establishes combat air patrols, and ASW coverage over the MPSRON-2 ships bound for Saudi Arabia. At the same time, CVW-14 also starts preparing for possible airstrikes against targets in Yemen.


0810– The Iranian government informs Moscow it will have a decision on the use of Iranian airspace by Soviet aircraft by early afternoon.


0815-0945– Soviet air search efforts to find the carrier group and MPS group are coming up short.


1015– A November class Soviet submarine launches an unsuccessful attack on the MPS group.  Upon receiving word on this CINC-CENT, General Crist, requests permission to start offensive operations against Soviet forces in the Persian Gulf area, specifically submarines at sea, and airbases in Yemen.


1130– A second submarine attack is conducted against the MPS group. The frigate USS Duncan is torpedoed and sunk. The attacking sub – a Tango class diesel boat– does not escape.


1200– The commander of Soviet forces in Yemen requests permission to prepare attacks against Saudi airbases where US aircraft are stationed.


1310– The Soviet ambassador in Tehran is summoned by the Iranian foreign minister who informs him the Islamic Republic of Iran will not permit Soviet military or civilian aircraft to transit Iranian airspace for the duration of the conflict. He goes on to state that Iran is declaring itself neutral and expects this status to be respected.


1400– The Soviets make a formal request to Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein to allow Soviet aircraft to transit Iraqi airspace.


1429– A November class submarine is destroyed by US Navy S-3A Vikings after another failed attack on the MPS group.


1430– General Crist receives permission to attack Soviet targets in Yemen. Orders are sent to the USS Constellation. The battlegroup commander decides to wait until after dark to begin the effort.


1600– Iraqi Foreign Minister Tariq Aziz turns down the Soviet request for airspace use.


1730– As the MPSRON-2 ships approach the Strait of Hormuz, Iran’s declaration of neutrality is made public.


1800– Enraged by Iran’s refusal, Soviet Premier Grigory Romanov orders air strikes to be launched against several Iranian cities. After heated discussions with his politburo and other advisers, he agrees to revise the orders and limit the scope of the attacks.


2200– CVW-14 aircraft from the Constellation attack airbases, command centers, and other sites being actively used by Soviet forces in South Yemen.


2340– Soviet bombers attack Merhabad airport, and a handful of other targets in Tehran. TASS and Pravda call the raid ‘A direct result of Iran’s betrayal.’




4 Replies to “The Arabian Peninsula & Persian Gulf: D+0 (9 July, 1987) Part II**”

  1. It is not clear why Iraq did not provide the USSR with its airspace? After all, the USSR supported Iraq in the Iran-Iraq war, including the supply of weapons.
    And why did Iran suffer for this? In this way, the Soviets not only did not punish Iraq, but they also helped it by active action.
    Strange, or I something not correctly understood?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I mean, both the ussr and the west supported Iraq during the war, if anything the west provided more support. Besides you can say many things about Sadam, but he was nobody’s pupit.

      Liked by 1 person

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